Step #1: Lectio / Read
Click the link below or open your Bible to the passage and read through the reading at least once, paying attention to what is happening in the text.
Step #2: Meditatio / Meditate
Use the following meditation to help you reflect more deeply on the Scripture (you may want to read the passage again).
Last fall my cousin decided to take a canoe trip from northern Indiana all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico in order to raise money for a friend who was fighting an illness; it certainly sounded like it was going to be quite the adventure. Throughout the trip he kept us updated on just how adventurous and challenging it was. He wrote on Facebook on how the nights were often dark and scary when camping on the banks of the Mississippi; the weather often did not cooperate – rain, wind, and cold temps were frequent; and it was also exhausting because of the long distance he had to travel in order to reach his goal.
I tell this story of my cousin’s trip because it relates to the situation the disciples found themselves in today’s Gospel…they were in a boat, it was dark out, the sea was stirred up because of a strong wind and storms, and they rowed for several miles…Without a doubt it was scary, difficult, and exhausting; it tested their faith.
Well, the reality is that we too go through challenges in our own lives; we are often surrounded by darkness, which can lead to fear and sin; we are blown around by the storms in life, whether family problems, interior struggles, or any events that rock the boat; and we are also busy, moving, and rowing from one thing to the next, it can certainly be exhausting.
Despite the challenges, Jesus assures us as He did with the disciples, that He comes near to us during our dark, fearful, stormy, and exhausting adventures of life – trust in this. He reminds us, “DO NOT BE AFRAID.” Let’s just make sure we always include Jesus on our journeys. Have no fear for the Lord is always near!
Step #3: Oratio / Pray
These questions are to be used to talk to God; have a conversation with the Lord about these questions and what is going on in your heart as you pray today.
What challenges are you currently facing? What are the storms in your life?
Where do you feel the Lord reassuring you to not be afraid?
How can you help other people weather the storms in their life?
Step #4: Contemplatio / Contemplate
In this step, you listen. Stop talking, let God speak to your heart. You may repeat one of these short phrases to focus your mind on the Lord.
"Lord, help me weather the storm."
"Do not be afraid."
"Jesus, I trust in you."
Step #5: Actio / Act
In light of today's reading and your time spent in prayer with the Lord, what concrete action or actions will you take to let this encounter with the Lord bear fruit in you today?
In the midst of the storms of life, conquer your fears and do not be afraid, knowing Jesus is there with you in the midst of the storm.
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Today's prayer was prepared by Fr. John McNamara, priest of the Diocese of Rockford.
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